Thursday, February 14, 2013

JCOPE Split Decision On Lopez Cover Up

Lopez Piggish Sexual Harasser?

Ethics Committee Looks Hard for Pigs In Albany and Only Finds One?

Ethics Report Eviscerates Vito Lopez For Years Of 'Piggish' Behavior; Clears Sheldon Silver: Sources(NYDN)

Silver Gets Away Scott Free With the Hush Fund Cover Up

JCOPE says it's completed an investigation, intuitively related to sexual harassment allegations against Assemblyman Vito Lopez. Under state law, any findings regarding legislative employees must be adjudicated by the bipartisan Legislative Ethics Committee That body decides on appropriate punishment, if any. If it does nothing in 45 days, the report becomes public.JCOPE says it's completed an investigation, intuitively related to sexual harassment allegations against Assemblyman Vito Lopez. * Lefcourt, Lopez's lawyer, says JCOPE commissioner told him today they're overnighting the report to him. ?* JCOPE finishes investigation of Lopez, Assembly(TU)

More on the Hush Fund Cover Up(True News)

Silver spokesman says they're confident JCOPE found "no ethical or legal violation" by speaker, urges ethics commission to release it* Sexual Harassment Case Against Lopez Sent to Legislature(NYT)  “From what I know of the investigation,” Gerald B. Lefcourt, Mr. Lopez’s lawyer, “it’s the same old stuff that he’s already been disciplined for.” * The Joint Commission on Public Ethics forwarded its report on the Assembly’s handling of Assemblyman Vito Lopez’s sexual harassment allegations to two legislative panels, meaning there is “substantial basis” that violations of state law occurred, the Times-Union reports

Gropez even 'ogled' a child: Accusation he made creepy comments on 14-year-old intern (NYP) 

Vito Lopez has lobbied at DiMarzio's behest, to block the passing of A5488, Assemblywoman Marge Markey's Child Victims Act, which DiMarzio opposes on the grounds that it would bankrupt Roman Catholic dioceses. (The Child Victims Act will expand, slightly, the statute of limitations for reporting incidents of sexual assault perpetuated by adults against children.) Lopez et al have been successful in preventing the passage of A5488, and Bishop DiMarzio has expressed his appreciation by campaigning for Lopez's political protégés within his diocese. *  Eyes Are On State Ethics Commission's Handling Of Lopez Allegations(NY1)

Woman's Rights: RIP Activism
A Social Change In NYC Woman's Rights and the Power of the Speaker to Control the Ethics Board Allows Silver and others to Escape Blame for Lopez's Hush Fund

How the Hush Fund Cover Up Succeed Indicates A Different NYC
Is New York Still New York? NYC's women activist of the past would never allow government leaders with covering up sexual abuse. Not only has the city's physically changed, the political, social, emotions and character has also. The Assembly speaker, Sheldon Silver, who has admitted making mistakes in his handling of the harassment charges, does not face charges in the report, people with knowledge of the findings said. There was widespread doubt that the state’s Joint Commission on Public Ethics would take any action against Mr. Silver, since his appointees to the commission’s board have effective veto power over its investigations.  Silver had authorized a secret payment of $103,080 earlier in the summer to settle previous allegations by two other women against Mr. Lopez. 

Former JCOPE Member Ravi Batra Lousy Job On Lopez
JCOPE, with its unbecoming speed and violation of normal deference to criminal process,  satisfied external political goals while documenting its total lack of independence. An ethics commission cannot be a political tool or satisfy
political goals as JCOPE continues to do, and take a "bow" to the pre-arranged
applause of "palace puppies," like Dick Dadey, who seek favors from people in
power. As a result, the public will now never hear the accused answer questions the public could have gotten answered and caused real reform to the epidemic that is power-based-sexual abuse that is Albany, and has to settle for JCOPE having a political master.

Daily News Ignores Hush Fund Sexual Harassment Cover Up and Does An Editorial to Strength NYS Rape Laws
 Rape is rape(NYDN Ed)New York’s unacceptably out-of-date rape law must be reformed, so no other woman in this state is ever forced to endure the cruel indignities of being told a rape is not a rape. 
Official's switch-up on bill shocks rape survivor(NYDN) * A Manhattan rape victim was blindsided after state Sen. Catherine Young introduced a bill that dropped a proposed change to the state’s rape laws to include forced anal and oral sex, a day after the victim appeared with Young at a news conference, the News reports:
Political Corruption

Even Huntly Double Guilty Plea Does Not Start A Call For An End Member Items
Ex-State Senator Files 2nd Guilty Plea in Fraud(NYT) Shirley L. Huntley of Queens, who is awaiting sentencing on a related federal charge, admitted in state court to trying to cover up the theft. Huntley pleaded guilty to falsifying evidence in an attempt to cover up the theft of $30,000 of taxpayer dollars from a nonprofit agency that she founded, and faces sentencing on April 4th* Fmr. Queens Senator Enters Second Guilty Plea In Non-Profit Scam(NY1)

BOE Cover Up Continues

Former Election Lawyer Paul Wooten is Hearing the Queens Fight Over Who Has the Right to Pick the Commissioners


Manhattan Supreme Court Judge Paul Wooten today denied the Queens County GOP's request for an order that would block the firing of temp workers by a new elections commissioner Michael Michel, chosen by the Republican members of the City Council. While Wooten denied the TRO request made on behalf of Queens County GOP Chairman Phil Ragusa and Judith Stupp -- the commissioner ousted in a stunning power play for control of the elections agency -- the larger case will go on. "I am not a lawyer, but I understand TROs are not easily granted," Ragusa said in a statement to the Daily Politics. "But I believe the Supreme Court will get the law right and justice will ultimately be done. We don't believe the law was intended to reward trickery or interfere with political parties. New York has smart judges."

While the Fight For Control of the BOE Goes On No Media or Political Debate Over the Roles of Quinn, Brewer or Council
With NYC Board Of Elections Shake-Up In Court, Dan Halloran Has Questions Of His Own(NYDN)* “I have concerns about the information that was put in the lawsuits,” Halloran said. “I have serious concerns about the timetables that were alleged.” The councilman questioned how it could be that Stupp’s re-recommendation wasn’t sent by certified mail and how both the copies sent to the City Clerk’s office and to Council Minority Leader James Oddo failed to show up. Halloran personally would have "walked them over" to assure delivery, he said. The opposition lawyer Mandelker says Robert Hornak of the Queens GOP -- who also himself happens to work for the Board of Elections, a reader reminds me -- has sworn under oath that following the borough party's Nov. 1 decision to re-nominate Stupp for another term, he mailed (on Nov. 19) the necessary documents to the city clerk and to Council Minority Leader James Oddo to renominate Stupp as a BOE Commissioner

Bloomberg  Legacy

Mayor Bloomberg's Address:
Bloomberg, in Last Annual Address, Cites City’s Gains and His Remaining Goals(NYT)
Video: Mayor Bloomberg’s Final State of the City Address

Bloomberg says special interests and political donors have never been weaker than they are today. Interesting from a massive political d...*Alot of good development coming but NYC unemployment is up above national average* Bloomberg takes shots at Democratic would be mayors, saying if Midtown East rezoning doesn't happen now with special interests, never will.* how many references to "middle class" in @MikeBloomberg's #sotc2013 speech? 1. very diff than @ChrisCQuinn's speech. cc: @grynbaumDespite damage from Sandy, mayor promises to open all beaches on Mem. Day weekend (when they normally open).. applauds new core standards tests for grd 3-8, but says since they will be diff, Can’t write a getting better / worse story

Via Twitter: Mayor takes a cheap shot at electeds & press who have taken "cheap shots" at NYCHA. But he admitted fundamental governan...* Mayor's plan to hire more public housing residents, kids w/ crim justice involvement in next steps of Sandy recovery.* Bloomberg on school bus strike: "I urge all bus drivers to return to work and I urge Local 1181 leaders to recognize their strike is a l...* So far, "special interests" in Mayor's = E. Midtown residents, teachers, charter school opponents, and bus drivers. Who's next?* Bloomberg: "Charter schools are public schools and their students deserve access to public school facilities. How dare the special intere..* announces new school design fellowship and one of the schools will be for students * Mixed reactions in the crowd to Mayor Bloomberg's defense of NYPD stop and frisk. * Well-deserved standing ovation for the Mayor on his national efforts to promote gun control. * Bloomberg on pot: Next month, anyone w/ ID and clearing warrant check will be released directly from precinct w/ desk appearance ticket* More Bloomberg skepticism of mayoral candidates: “We can’t let politics trump public safety and for the next 320 days at least, we won’t."* In Bloomberg predicts NYC would have had 4092 more murders last year w/o stop and frisk, if it was like Detroit * "Today, we are collecting fewer guns, but that is not an excuse to stop it – it is a reason to continue it. Because the possibility of a... will curb non-biodegradable food containers, but the doggie back and the coffee cup will survive (otherwise), Bloomberg says. * Bloomberg: Styrofoam increases cost of recycling as much as $20/ton. "I think it's something we can do without." Bloomberg quoted Robert Frost "I have miles to go before I sleep"* Should buildling places for tourists to stay be the highest priority when so many NYers don't have homes?* John Liu Slams Bloomberg’s ‘Selective Retelling of History’(NYO) * Speech Aside, the State of the City Was Poppin'(NYT) * Bloomberg’s Go-To D.J. Kept It Brooklyn at State of the City Speech(NY Mag) * Mayor Announces Change In City's Marijuana Arrest Polic (NY1) * Why the Barclays Center Was the Perfect Setting for Bloomberg’s Final State of the City Speech(NY Mag) * NY1 Online: Political Observers Weigh In On State of the City

  Immigration and Gun Control are the priority? NO - NYC needs our economy fixed, schools working, and quality of life crimes addressed first

The Kings (County) speech: Mayor’s last lavishes praise on Brooklyn legacy

How Does A Graduating Mayor Save His Reputation . . .  Plastics?
Bloomberg will propose a citywide ban on plastic-foam food packaging, with city officials saying that the proposal could save millions of dollars per year,
To Go: Plastic-Foam Containers, if the Mayor Gets His Way(NYT) Michael R. Bloomberg, the New York mayor who has moved to regulate fatty foods, big sodas and smoking outdoors, will propose a ban on a derided polymer.  *Reputation on the Line (WSJ) Debate over Mayor Michael Bloomberg's third term is renewed as he tackles his final year in office.* Mayor To Offer Plans To Make City Greener In State Of The City Address(NY1)
* Debate continues over whether Bloomberg’s successful push to overturn term limits and seek a third four-year term was worth it for NYC.* Bloomberg To Deliver Final State Of The City Address(WCBS)* NYC Mayor Bloomberg has plan to turn Staten Island food waste to compost, ban some plastic containers (Staten Island Advance)* 2001 23% waste recycled. Now down to 15%.* From Bloomberg, a Warning of Life After Bloomberg(NYT)

Bloomberg's Last State of the City in Arena That the City Paid for
Mayor picks Barclays Ctr for the big speech. Symbol of econ devlpment & Brooklyn renaissance, but also resentment toward developers/industry
Today, Mayor Mike Bloomberg delivers his final State of the City address at the new Barclays Center arena, chosen because it has generated “unprecedented economic activity in the area.”Uncounted savings on the Barclays Center: perhaps $124 million in free land for developer Forest City Ratner(Atlantic Yard Review)
Campaign 2013
Breaking Poll
Christine Quinn gets 37% in new mayoral poll - close to the 40% she needs to avoid a primary run-off
NY1/Marist Poll: 37% 13% 12% 9% 2% Undecided 26%
NY1/Marist poll: 20% 8% 5% 4% @AdolfoNY 3% Undecided 55%
NY1 Exclusive: New Poll Shows Quinn In Front Of Other Potential Democratic 2013 Mayor Candidates
Chris Quinn, Joe Lhota Lead Their Packs In Mayoral Matchups, New Polling Shows(NYDN)

Quinn An Ally to the Real Estate Industry Indeed

Takes At Least $30,000 from Rudins Who Closed A Hospital for Co-Ops in Her District  
Quinn’s Affordable Housing Plan Revisits Tax Caps Once Rejected by Bloomberg(NYT) City Council speaker Christine C. Quinn’s proposal would impose a 30-year cap on real estate taxes for landlords who set aside 20 percent of their apartments for below-market rents.
 Some ‘Affordable’ Units Too Costly, Report Says(NYT) * Democratic mayoral candidate Christine Quinn picked up another endorsement from the Mason Tenders District Council, the third union to back Quinn, creating pressure on her rival Bill de Blasio to win the remaining labor support, the New York Daily News reports: * “Can Quinn Build on RWDSU Endorsement?,” A Gay City News profile asked yesterday of Council Speaker Christine Quinn‘s mayoral candidacy. Today, Ms. Quinn did just that by scoring another union endorsement, the Mason Tenders District Council. While she has yet to earn the support of the city’s most powerful labor institutions, neither has anyone else and every little bit helps.*  Quinn, who before she was elected Speaker was an affordable-housing activist, has been a reliable ally to real estate (Capital) * St. Vincent's Hospital - Reckless Rudin Condo Conversion Hearing ...  * Yankees President DisgracesPinstripes with Political Donations To Quinn(Queens Politics)

Supermarket mogul Catsimatidis launches massive phone campaign(NYP)

A message from Sal Albanese (Video)

CAMPAIGN NOTEBOOK: Councilman Halloran kicks off re-election(NYDN)

After recently scoring the backing of Assembly Speaker Shelly Silver, Julie Menin continued to amass Downtown support in her Manhattan Borough President bid with the endorsement of Assemblywoman Deborah Glick. “I am excited to support Julie for Manhattan Borough President because she has been a forceful progressive leader for our neighborhoods — steadfast in her commitment to quality schools, affordable housing, and open space – crucial to making Manhattan a livable place for everyone,” Ms. Glick said in a statement. 

Coney City Council candidates clash(Brooklyn Daily)

Latino Civic Leaders Defect From Jose Peralta (Queens Politics)

Independence Party challenger makes mayoral race a three-way affair(NYDN) Former Bronx Borough President Alfoldo Carrion Jr. is touted as a likely candidate for the party following full-page ad spotted in free metro daily Wednesday.

NYS Government

As Cuomo's Dip In Poll Numbers Media/Comptroller Pounce 
Comptroller Tom DiNapoli criticized Cuomo’s budget for borrowing too much (among other things) and got into a verbal pissing match with Budget Director Bob Megna
Comptroller Criticizes Budget Plan of Governor(NYT) Thomas P. DiNapoli said Gov. Andrew M. Cuomo’s proposal depended on federal aid that might not materialize and counted on wage and job growth bringing big increases in tax revenues.DiNapoli criticized several parts of Gov. Cuomo’s budget proposal on Wednesday, raising concerns that the budget depended too much on federal aid and wage and job growth producing increases in tax collection* Cuomo to Cities: Just Borrow(NYT Ed) Taking on new debt won’t solve the deep fiscal problems plaguing New York cities and towns. It will just make things worse.* Comptroller, Governor at Odds Over Budget(WSJ) Cuomo Discusses Fracking Study, Minimum Wage * In the Times, Syracuse Mayor Stephanie Miner criticizes Cuomo for not using his political capital to confront the multiple fiscal pressures that loom over New York State’s cities * Audit: MTA overlooks $90M in its own accounts(NYDN)* Cuomo pushed back against the suggestion his administration is playing politics in further delaying a decision on hydraulic fracturing, saying the issue is “too important to make a mistake.”“President Barack Obama one-upped (Cuomo) when he proposed raising the minimum wage in his Tuesday evening State of the Union speech, but it’s unclear if the president’s proposal will help or hinder Cuomo’s quest.”ICYMI: Syracuse Mayor Stephanie Miner upped the ante in her verbal war with Cuomo over his pension smoothing plan, likening it to the “fiscal recklessness that plunged New York City into a fiscal crisis in the mid-1970s.”* From The Memo: Cuomo Challenged(YNN) * Glaser To Miner: Solve Your Problems Or Someone Else Will(YNN) * Cuomo aide says more state money won’t solve Syracuse’s woes * EJ McMahon weighs in on the fight over pension smoothing between the governor and Syracuse Mayor Stephanie Miner.NY Dem co-chair urges rejection of Cuomo budget(NYP)

A Return to the Liberal North East GOP To Stay in Power
What are republicans good for?(NYP Ed) Word from Albany is that the time is ripe for “compromise” on a minimum-wage hike. When attached to the GOP, that’s a word that should set off alarm bells — because all too often it translates to “utter abandonment of all principles.” What’s missing from New York today is a party dedicated to changing the debate by telling the truth about the cost of government and the need for a growing economy. In other words, we need a genuine opposition.* Stewart-Cousins Backs $9 Wage, Senate GOP Wants To Wait(YNN) * Could Gun Control Split Republicans In New York?(YNN)

Some NYC tenant advocates are not at all happy with new Assembly Housing Chairman Keith Wright.

Remember, City Council, Forever Is a Really Long Time(NYT)The operators of Madison Square Garden are asking for a permit in perpetuity, a plan that could seal Penn Station’s fate underground.

 State school districts and taxpayers will bear an increased burden in the pension contribution rate for teachers and other workers, with a 37 percent increase expected, driven by baby boomer retirements and low investment returns, the Times-Union writes:

IG Uncovers More Trouble At NYS Fair(YNN)

Teflon Crane Operators

Inspector in 2008 Crane Collapse Gets Probation(NYT) A judge said Edward J. Marquette’s case fell into a difficult category for sentencing, one in which people who have led good lives do something very wrong.

Demand for Stronger Gun Laws
[image]To Fight Guns, a New Model (WSJ) About three-dozen people sat in the bleachers of the Newtown High School gym one recent evening discussing how to pass stricter gun laws. The message they heard: become more like gun owners. Just a day after hundreds of gun rights advocates rallied in Albany against Cuomo’s new gun-control law, others affected by the strictest-in-the-nation regulations weighed in with objections of their own at a hearing in Buffalo.

Many Gun Laws Have Not Worked Like Designed
In the Post, Thomas Repetto, former president of the Citizens Crime Commission, examines past “tough” criminal justice laws that were ineffective in helping law enforcement, in the wake of the state’s new gun control law and a proposed bail reform
Beyond ‘Tough laws’What really stops crime in NY(Reppetto, NYP) Tough laws often don’t translate into effective law enforcement in the courts or on the streets. In 2006, the Legislature raised the mandatory sentence for packing an unlicensed firearm to 3 1/2 years. Yet, five years after the law was passed, only about half of the illegal gun carriers arrested in New York City were imprisoned. The city’s criminal-justice coordinator observed that the “interest of justice” provision still affords a loophole “big enough to drive a Mack truck through."

Gun Control and Mental Health
Opponents of the state’s new gun control law weighed in at a hearing on the legislation held in Buffalo, with mental health advocates expressing concern over requiring doctors and counselors to report potentially violent clients to the state, The Buffalo News reports:Forms for pistol-permit holders to opt out of having their information public will be available starting tomorrow. * Scarborough Hammers ‘Shameful,’ ‘Scared’ GOP For Not Condemning NRA’s LaPierre’s ‘Racial’ Arguments Rep. Peter King and other Republicans plan to join Democrats in offering a House version of a bipartisan Senate bill to impose universal background checks for gun purchases. 

NYC Government

Livery cabs sue to block ‘e-hail’ smartphone apps
Today's Court ruling declaring unlawful ' attempt to impose eligibility requirements for single homeless adults is a huge victory!* The Livery Roundtable’s and Black Car Assistance Corp. is suing in hopes of blocking recently adopted rules by the New York City Taxi and Limousine  Commission regarding “e-hail” smartphone apps.

Appeals Court Rules NYCHA Can Evict Tenants Who Violate (WCBS) * Court: NYC can't implement new homeless policy(Fox 5)* NYC Housing Authority can evict tenants who lie about income,(SI Advance)* City Enacted New Homeless Shelter Policy Illegally, Court Says (NYT) * City Eligibility Policy for Homeless People Seeking Shelter Was Enacted Illegally, Court Says(NYT)

[image]Many Levels, Types, of Power (WSJ) The world of New York City education politics is only for those girded for a fight* DOE To Allow Students To Transfer Out Of Public Schools Getting Phased Out(NY1) Department Of Education officials announced Wednesday that they will allow up to 16,000 students to transfer out of 61 city public schools that are being phased out, and state officials say these transfers will be given "first in line" status.

What Happen to Head Start?  Did It Work?
The State of the 4-Year-Olds(NYT)* Preschool Plan Faces Uncertain Future(WSJ)

Feds Special Needs School Bus Problems
City must adhere to federal act mandating transportation The city is flouting federal education regulations that require special needs students to receive school transportation, says a special education watchdog.* Some Low-Income Students Without Buses Have Issues With (NY1)
School bus strike poses hardship for parents(NYDN)

Brooklyn H.S. beams after Obama praise(Fox 5) A Brooklyn high school is as proud as it was surprised by President Barack Obama's praise of its innovative program in his state-of-the-union address

Catholic Mom Sues City to Send Daughter to School Without Vaccinations(DNAINFO)

NYC Poverty 

Concentrated Poverty in New York City: An Analysis of the Changing Geographic Patterns of Poverty

NYC Flashback

For all of you who didn't live in New York in the 70s and 80s, this is what it was like.

Brooklyn Tech Center
 Master Plan Being Drawn Up For Brooklyn "Tech Triangle"(NY1)


NYCHA Chairman Addresses Concerns At Second Council Hearing On Sandy Response(NY1)* House Passes Bill To Allow Houses Of Worship To Get FEMA Money For Sandy Repairs(NY1) * LIPA Customers Are the Most Dissatisfied in the Country, a Study Says(NYT) * LIC's Historic Waterfront Crab House Opens for First Time Since Sandy(DNAINFO) * Times Square Hotels Saw Upswing in Wake of Sandy(DNAINFO)* Utility Critics Seek Advocate For Customers in New York(NYT)

Manhattan VA Hospital to reopen clinics(NYDN)

Red Hook’s Fairway Market set to open March 1st.(NYDN)*

Sandy-flooded Brooklynites blast FEMA’s bleach advice(Brooklyn Paper) Government advice to use bleach to clean up mold could leave Gerritsen Beachers in a bad spot, experts say


US Senate Republicans managed to block a final confirmation vote on the nomination of their former colleague, Chuck Hagel, to be President Obama’s next defense secretary.

Obama Bid for Europe Trade Pact Stirs Hope on Both Sides(NYT) * On Immigration, Obama Draws Bipartisan Praise(NYT)

Senate Democrats Try to Force Hagel Vote(NYT)Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid filed a motion to limit debate and force an “up or down” vote on Obama’s defense secretary nominee, former Nebraska Sen. Chuck Hagel, before the week is out.* G.O.P. Senators Block Vote on Defense Post for Hagel(NYT)

Hill’s sweet ’16 bid (NYP) A Greek-American real-estate honcho claims Bill Clinton told him that wife Hillary will again chase the presidency in 2016, according to a new report.* Hillary Clinton’s 2016 Run Confirmed by Greek-American News Agency [Updated](NY Mag)

NY exhibits draft of Washington's Farewell Address(WSJ)
Obama: The Audacity of Freedom - E.J. Dionne, Washington Post
Let Me Be Clear, It's All About Him - Daniel Henninger, Wall Street Journal
A "Do-Something" Plan for a "Have-Nothing" Gov't - Matt Welch, CNN
Obama Sets a Lose-Lose Trap for Republicans - Jacob Weisberg, Slate
Chris Kyle: Tragic Death of a Warrior Hero - Toby Harnden, Sunday Times
Can GOP Be Saved From Obsolescence? - Robert Draper, NY Times Magazine
Outside of Beltway GOP Has Never Been Stronger - Al Cardenas, USAToday
The State of the 4-Year-Olds - Gail Collins, New York Times
Dangerous Partnership Between Big Business & Gov't - Tom Borelli, RCM
Republicans Begin Filibuster to Stop Hagel? - Mike Memoli, LA Times

Lautenberg Retiring
Sen. Lautenberg not seeking re-election in NJ(NYP) * Lautenberg, Oldest Member of Senate, Will Step Down(NYT) Newark Mayor Cory Booker’s road to the US Senate just got a whole lot easier. More here.* When Sen. Frank Lautenberg retires, there will be no WW II vets in the US Senate.


Is North Dakota's Boom Already Over? - Derek Thompson, The Atlantic
Obama's Gangster Gov't Operates Above Law - Michael Barone, Examiner
Republicans Plagued by Good News - Froma Harrop, Providence Journal
Creating Jobs of Yesterday, Tomorrow! - David Harsanyi, Human Events
What's Gotten Into the Water at CNN? - Ed Driscoll, PJ Media
The Real Trouble with Jonah Lehrer - Isaac Chotiner, The New Republic
Calvin Coolidge, Commander in Brief - George Will, Washington Post

Obama Lays Out an Ambitious Set of Priorities - Pittsburgh Post-Gazette
What About Jobs, Mr. President? - Las Vegas Review-Journal
ObamaCare vs. the Young - Orange County Register
A Court for Targeted Killings - New York Times
Senate Committee Demands Drone Memos, Delays Vote On CIA Nominee(Huff Post)
Obama taking wait-and-see approach on immigration: (Politico)
ope in Rubio and Paul's SOTU Responses - James Antle, The Daily Caller
The Grand Old Jurassic Party - Steve Erickson, The American Prospect
Good Riddance to the Buckley Rule - Ben Domenech, RealClearPolitics
Obama, Hagel Are Entitled to an Up-or-Down Vote - Lanny Davis, The Hill
Arab-American Group Won't Release Hagel Tape - Alana Goodman, WFB
Delaying Hagel Is Key to Stopping Hagel - Jonathan Tobin, Commentary
Filibustering Hagel Will Come Back to Bite GOP - Steve Kornacki, Salon
The State of the Democrats - Yuval Levin, National Review
Wayne Lapierre's Dystopia - Ed Kilgore, Washington Monthly
The Clueless Media and the Pope - Michael Walsh, New York Post
Benedict XVI: A Papal Benediction - Jon Meacham, Time
Videos: Harkin | McConnell | Brown | Walsh | Krauthammer | Stewart
Child Does Not Feign Interest in President Obama(NY Mag)


Next stop, Iowa(NYP)  Midwest’s Meredith in talks to buy Time titles The sale would rip apart the Time Inc. stable of well-known magazines — and it has already stirred anger and resentment inside the nation’s largest magazine publisher “A lot of Time Inc. is about glamour — what does Meredith know about glamour?” groused one insider at the Time & Life Building as the news broke yesterday. “A lot of the talent will be leaving before the ink is dry on a deal,” the source said.* Time Warner Considers Spinning Off Magazines(NYT) * Time Warner said to be in talks to sell the majority of (NYDN)

Scott Brown Feels He Can ‘Make a Difference’ by Appearing on Hannity(NY Mag)

Stewart Tears Into State Of The Union, Slams Obama: ‘Who’s Running This Sh*thole, Right, People?’

Wall Street

Taibbi: How 'Gangster Bankers' Became 'Too Big To Jail'(Huff Post)

Experts Warn: Street Setting Itself Up For Next Crisis(Huff Post)

Law and Order

 Tech Advances Now Make It More Important to Open Cameras Into Courtroom

Top NY judge courts cams(NYP) The state’s top judge says advances in technology make it more important than ever to open courtrooms to cameras so New Yorkers can see how justice works.* Chief Judge Calls for Court Cameras 

Judge apologizes to Figoski family After Driver of Police Murder Walks
‘Slay’ driver walks (NYP) The man who drove a crew of bandits to rob a Brooklyn drug den — culminating in the fatal shooting of a decorated NYPD officer — was cleared of burglary and murder charges yesterday. The Brooklyn jury verdict after a one-day trial was the second blow in a week delivered to the family of slain Detective Peter Figoski, whose parents, ex-wife and daughters sat stunned, some bursting into tears, as jurors cleared 22-year-old Michael Velez in the cop killing.* Man Is Acquitted of Murder in Robbery That Killed Officer(NYT) * Accused Getaway Driver Found Not Guilty In NYPD Officer's Murder(NY1)

Push-slay twist(NYP)Accused Muslim-hating subway pusher Erika Menendez got a bit of good news yesterday: One of the charges against her was reduced. Menendez, 31, was charged last month for assaulting a correction officer while in custody at Elmhurst Hospital on Dec. 31 for allegedly pushing Sunando Sen in front of a oncoming 7 train in Sunnyside, Queens, two days earlier. Prosecutors decided to reduce the charge from a felony to a misdemeanor.

Judge dismisses five of alleged Cashman stalker's charges, none involving Yankees GM(NYP)Pot possession in NYC? From now on: No overnight jail, just desk appearance ticket from precinct, Bloomberg to say.

 Fewer NYPD brutality complaints Sandy takes down hotlin (NYDN) A review of brutality complaints against the NYPD might suggest cops have been on their best behavior — with a 48% dip in reports of police abuse between November and January. But not so fast. The fact is Hurricane Sandy’s bad behavior took out the city’s complaint phone line, making it impossible to quantify cops’ good behavior.
Man, 23, Charged With Murder in Queens Motel Room Death(NBC)

NYPD plans to use drones(Queens Crap From NBC 4: Law enforcement agencies across the U.S. are filing FAA applications to use drones for surveillance but civil rights groups are concerned about a lack of regulation. In January, NYPD Commissioner Ray Kelly said he would be interested in using drones for monitoring crowds and large demonstrations. But Kelly’s idea of a drone is not the Predator that most Americans picture. During a sit-down interview at Manhattan’s 92nd Street Y, Kelly reportedly said he would consid

Grand jury refuses to indict NYPD cop who gunned down National Guardsman during traffic stop(NYP)

I-Team: iPhone Thief Shares Secrets of Preying on NYers(NBC)
I-Team: iPhone Thief Shares Secrets of Preying on NYers(NBC)
Sex Assault Suspect Tracked Through Stolen Phone(NBC)

Brooklyn rabbi arrested in a 'to catch a predator' sting by cops(AMNY)

Strangling Deaths of Three NYC Gay Men Not Related(NY Mag)

Man Arrested for Giving Cops the Finger Wins $15K Settlement from the City(DNAINFO)
No grand jury indictment in Queens police shooting(WABC)
No Indictment in Police Shooting on Grand Central Parkw(NBC)
Kim and Kanye Breach Security at JFK

Hobo is ‘Z’ top Turk-slay suspect(NYP)

EMT elevator rapist gets 89 years in prison(NYDN)

Man shot in leg in Brooklyn(WABC)

Judge Bans Some Images From Trial of Officer(NYT)

No Charges for Detective in a Killing of a Driver(NYT)

Cost of cop-killing Ronell Wilson trial, man who impregnated jail guard, could cost taxpayers even more(NYP)

Prosecutor Who Assaulted Ambulance Worker Avoids Jail Sentence(NYT)

Quick-heist gang bags 700G in high-end purses(NYP)* Falling Far Short of the Whole Truth(NYT) The British law firm that hired Soma Sengupta discovered that she had lied about her age — and from there found that many things were not as she had claimed.